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Emancipation Question Virginia

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  • Emancipation Question Virginia

    My former step-daughter will be 15 this coming November. She is currently living with her aunt and uncle (aunt is her fathers sister) because her father and his wife "could not handle her."

    Her father and aunt share joint custody of her. Her aunt recently informed her that they have scheduled her for counceling and if she doesn't become "a better person", they would send her back to her fathers house.

    Although her father and I have been divorced for nine years, I raised this child from the time she was 1 until just passed 6 years of age.

    Her father and uncle refuse to speak to her and her aunt is running out of patience. She is not allowed to do anything a "normal" child her age is allowed to do...have friends, go places, etc. In fact, her aunt recently told me that she would not be able to come visit with me and her sister (my daughter) because she was recently caught shoplifting and was being punished. As it turned out, she did shoplift. It was a mother's day card for me that her aunt would not allow her to buy because I am not her "real" mother.

    Well, that is a small dose of the background. My question is this:

    At 15 years old, can she file for emancipation, if her only plan is to live with me and her sister? If not, is there anything I can do to try to gain custody of her? She is a handful, she does have problems, but her problems stem from the fact that she is (or feels) unwanted. She has been begging to live with me for nine years now and I hate that I cannot do anything to help her. I am, in fact, no longer allowed to speak to her because "they" feel she is out of touch with reality. They will not allow her to call me mom, they insist on her calling her new step-mother "mom". She cannot call my parents "grandma" and "grandad" because we are legally no longer her family and they believe that she is incapable of telling the truth from a lie.

    I should also add that her biological mother is no where to be found and hasn't had contact with her since she was a toddler. Her father hired an investigator once to locate her with the intention of making her take custody, but he was unable to locate her.

    Any advice is much appreciated!!

  • #2
    Emancipation is not an option. Emancipation is granted VERY rarely and only when there is a pressing need AND the minor is able to be self-supporting.

    You can certainly petition the court for guardianship.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


    • #3
      What would I need to prove to gain guardianship? Technically, her father and his wife and her aunt and uncle are all upstanding people. All have good jobs, make a lot of money, and live in nice homes. Monitarily speaking, she is well taken care of...emotionally, not so much. I fear the battle would be fruitless because I am not as well off in terms of career/income.

      Of course, SHE would give up her room/possessions in a heartbeat to live with us and share a room with her sister at our house, but I am not sure how to even go about it.



      • #4
        Those are question you should ask an Attorney


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